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Pacman (NGC 281), 


            Gary Lopez

Imaging telescopes or lenses: William Optics FLT 132 Triplet APO f/7

Imaging cameras: ZWO ASI1600MM Cooled PRO

Mounts: Orion Atlas EQ-G

Guiding telescopes or lenses: Orion 50mm Guide Scope with helical focusing

Guiding cameras: Lacerta M-Gen II Autoguider

Focal reducers: William Optics Flattener 68III

Software: Adobe Lightroom CC  ·  Photoshop CC  ·  Main Sequence Software Sequence Generator Pro, v3.0

Filters: Astrodon OIII 3nm-31mm  ·  Astrodon SII 3nm-31mm  ·  Astrodon Ha 3nm-31mm

Dates:Aug. 31, 2019Sept. 1, 2019Sept. 2, 2019Sept. 3, 2019Sept. 5, 2019Sept. 10, 2019

Astrodon Ha 3nm-31mm: 227x180" (gain: 139.00) -15C bin 1x1
Astrodon OIII 3nm-31mm: 59x180" (gain: 139.00) -15C bin 1x1
Astrodon SII 3nm-31mm: 66x180" (gain: 139.00) -15C bin 1x1

Integration: 17.6 hours

Darks: ~30

Bias: ~50

Avg. Moon age: 5.01 days

Avg. Moon phase: 29.30%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 4.00

Basic astrometry details job: 3649391

Resolution: 4820x2410

Locations: Monterey Pines Observatory, Monterey, California, United States

Data source: Backyard


In the constellation Cassiopeia is a bright emission nebula, NGC 281, commonly called “Pacman.” In the center of the nebula is a star cluster, IC 5090, whose young, hot stars are generating intense solar winds that are sculpting channels and pockets in the surrounding gas and dust. Along the perimeter are a collection of Bok globules, as well as a large dust cloud that forms a dark slash across the mass.

The data for this image were collected in 2019. I captured nearly 30 hours, but employed only the best 17 hour for this image, data with HFR 2.8 or less. I created a master luminance with Ha, OIII, and SII data whose HFR was 2.3 or less.

This is an image in a series I have been developing entitled, Spacescape Collection (please see the earlier posted image in this collection, Corolla. In this series I strive to compose often-photographed objects in a fresh way. All of the images in this collection are starless and rendered with a 1:2 panoramic aspect ratio. For display, the Spacescape Collection is printed on heavy, watercolor paper. The texture of the paper enhances the complex texture of the image and best shows the translucent colors. Images are printed using archival materials, in sizes ranging from 15”x30” (38cm x 75cm) to 30” x 60” (75cm x 150cm), and mounted on a floater frame. To see my printed images please visit Gallery Sur, Carmel, CA (